Replacing a Glass Door Panel on the Exterior of a House

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Exterior doors come in many shapes, sizes, colors and textures. Some come with glass panels. Glass panel doors are also varied. The glass panels come clear, textured, patterned and opaque. Glass is very fragile and can break especially in an exterior door. A doors gets slammed and rocks get thrown. If a glass panel in a door breaks, it will need to be replaced. City codes usually demand installing tempered glass which shatters in millions of little pieces as opposed to regular glass that comes down in large spears.

Things You'll Need

  • Tape measure Glass panel Glazing knife Spatula Silicone-based sealant Chop saw Quarter round trim Hammer Brad nails
  • Measure the glass panel needing replacement and order the new piece of glass. Glass can be ordered from any glass company.

  • Cut away the silicon-based sealant from around the old glass panel, in your exterior house door, using a glazing knife.

  • Remove the glazing bead or caulking from the glass panel perimeter and remove the old glass panel from the door.

  • Clean up all the old sealant and caulking with a knife or spatula from the door's glass cavity.

  • Apply a new silicone-based sealant, purchased at any hardware or glass store, around the inside of the cavity and install the new piece of glass. The sealant provides a moisture barrier.

  • Place a glass stop around the glass perimeter. Measure and cut quarter round wood to fit along all four sides of the glass panel. Carefully hammer the wood trim in place using small brad nails.

Tips & Warnings

  • Quarter round is a wood trim measuring 1/4-inch on each side. You can choose any type of trim you would like to finish off your glass panel with. Go to your local hardware store and find out what types of trim are available and follow the manufacturer's recommended installation instructions.
  • Be careful when replacing the glass panel. Glass is fragile and can be broken. Carefully hammer in the brads to secure the glass so you do not accidentally break the glass upon installation.

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